Two key terms for online marketing that are sometimes confused are search engine optimization (SEO) and content marketing, and both play important but different roles in online marketing.
In this article we will highlight the difference between SEO and content marketing, focusing on each other’s goals and how they are achieved.
Improve Your Google Ranking
The growing importance of SEO over the past 20 years is a direct result of the changing consumer purchasing habits created by the Internet, with Google’s search engine receiving about 2 trillion searches a year.
Using search engines to find what you want is such an important part of modern life that you can find “google” in the dictionary as a verb, one of the main differences between search engine optimization and content marketing is target setting.
The SEO process is about getting as many suitable visitors from organic search engine results (i.e. unpaid) to your website as we mean those most likely to buy and use your products and services.
The best way to do this is to get the highest ratings of terms used by these customers in search engines, it’s the first results on the first page that get the vast majority of clicks, that’s why search engine enhancers have become an important part of modern marketing
SEO as a marketing channel
The focus of search engine enhancers on bringing customers to a website or store is why we call it a marketing channel and the purpose of any marketing channel is to serve as a means of communicating with customers
Other known digital marketing channels are:
- Email Marketing
- Search Engine Marketing
- Paid Advertising
- Social Media Marketing (SMM)
- TV Advertising
- Traditional Advertising
It is important to note that the actual channel is not searched engines, but search engine optimization for two reasons, first: search engines also play an important role in marketing across other channels, especially in search engine marketing (SEM).
Second: While search engines are where customers find a website, it is search engine optimization that ensures a website is found in organic results, if your website is not properly optimized, search engines like Google may not be able to find it and include it in their results.
Search engine optimization, page, and content
Search engine optimization is often about improving two areas:
First: Website optimization usually means improved technical setup, such as reducing upload times and photo sizes or sending a site map, and it’s basically about making sure it’s easy for search engines to scan and find your website content.
Second: When we think about SEO, we think about content optimization, what’s important here is to make sure your content ranks as high as possible for keywords used by your target audience.
What a website owner wants to do with these visitors depends on the strategy that motivates their search engine enhancements. For example, anyone who follows a direct marketing strategy can use a search engine optimization content strategy.
The top-rated organic results of the term “buy flowers” on the site all lead to e-commerce sites selling flowers because the owners of these sites have improved their content to appear in the results of searches people use to find and buy flowers online.
But we use search engines for more than just buying products, we also use them for research and learning. The results we want our website to show depend on the marketing strategy we use, as you will see, the keywords we target in content marketing can be very different from those we use in e-commerce.
Increased participation in content marketing
While SEO is about getting clicks into organic results, the content marketing strategy focuses on building a relationship with customers and increasing interaction with written content, videos, photos and social media posts.
Compared to a direct marketing strategy, content marketing goals are often less urgent or clear. They may create a brand or build awareness of a website in specific areas related to its industry.
The Guinness Book of World Records is one of the great examples of pre-Internet content marketing, started as a promotion of the Guinness drinks brand, and was initially intended as a way to create fun content.
The book played a crucial role in the company’s development to become a major international brand by engaging consumers’ interests and sparking conversations that are key elements of content marketing.
Marketing modern content with brands
In the age of online marketing, online content marketing is an evolution of sponsorship and television advertising from the pre-internet era, and large brands that used to advertise themselves through TV advertising and sponsorship can buy coverage rights to these events themselves, and can then share this content on their channels.
Red Bull is a good example of a large brand that benefits greatly from content marketing in the Internet age. They regularly create interesting multimedia content on exciting topics, from e-sports streaming to lectures and discussions with music legends such as Iggy Pop, as well as performances by contemporary pop musicians such as Lena Myer Landro.
Sharing this interesting content on their channels creates interaction and makes their brand look new and cool,
Counting the creation of interesting content that is not directly related to selling products is a possible way to build online followers. When consumers subscribe to the brand’s social media channels, they create a valuable direct channel between them and that brand, and this channel remains open only as long as the consumer is interested in it, which is a major reason why content marketing is important.
Customers will not for long follow the company channel consisting solely of product promotions, content marketing keeps consumers interested until they interact and accept the offer, and equally important, content marketing builds a relationship with customers that can lead to long-term brand loyalty
Content Marketing for Small Businesses
Many small companies will serve content marketing as a way to find customers. However, these companies do not have the budget or support to do content marketing like big brands.
Instead, small businesses should do content marketing in a smart way that leverages the power of the Internet, because consumers use the Internet not only to find what they want to buy but also to solve problems and find interesting new topics and content.
Many content marketing strategies are based on this fact, they create useful and interesting content that refers to their brand but does not focus directly on sales, then they put this content on channels that consumers find like blogs, social media and YouTube, and customers who come across a brand that shares interesting and useful content get a good first impression of them.
When interesting content is well compatible with the audience, a high number of visits is almost inevitable because those who enjoy content are more likely to experience the company’s products and services.
When content is properly marketed can engage your audience to significantly increase your reach, and videos have succeeded in building the company’s image on their own and have generated many sales as a large part of the people watching these videos have become customers.
Similarities between content marketing and search engine optimization
Search engine optimization often goes hand in hand with content marketing, and we find many YouTube videos through the search bar that are the keywords found in videos that make them detectable on YouTube.
Using keyword strategies to optimize search engines, marketers maximize the reach of these videos and make these videos detectable in search engines, and one’s keyword tools can also be used to find SEO’s best keywords to discover good content marketing themes.
Search engines are an important search and discovery tool for modern consumers and we all use them several times a day to solve our problems.
Marketers can do keyword searches on search engines to find questions and problems customers may face with their products, and then create content to solve these problems.
This content can take the form of improved media or educational blog articles using search engine enhancers, or keyword-enhanced videos that attract potential customers to your website.
A good example is Laura star’s informative YouTube tutorial on how to arrange your shirt in just two minutes. This video takes into account that an average of 2,400 people search for “ironing a shirt” each month (based on the keyword search tool.
Laurastar has created a simple but well-produced learning video that answers this question, and the video now has hundreds of thousands of views from people who want to improve their ironing technology, and some of these viewers will want to explore the brand and also buy products associated with the video description.
Compendium in SEO and content marketing
Search engine enhancers are sometimes confused with content marketing because content marketing can benefit from search engine optimizers’ tools and techniques, especially when it comes to creating solution-oriented and informational content aimed at reaching customers through search engines.
Search engine optimization is primarily focused on increasing the number of clicks a website gets in search engine results by optimizing the website and its content, while content marketing is a marketing strategy that often uses multiple channels to meet consumer needs, interests, and curiosity.